40 Surprising And Little-known Facts About Friends
Despite ending its 10-year run in 2004, the ever-popular television sitcom Friends has managed to remain relevant and attract new viewers. Thanks to its availability on streaming services like Netflix, the show has found a new audience among viewers too young to enjoy it during its initial broadcast in 1994. Whether you’re a seasoned fan who has watched every episode countless times or a newcomer just starting to follow the gang’s adventures, there are undoubtedly some subtle details and Easter eggs in the show that you may have overlooked. So, test your Friend’s knowledge and see if you can spot these hidden gems!
Let’s start with something simple. Genuine Friends fans will recognize Chandler and Joey’s dry-erase board that hangs on their door. They’d utilize it to leave each other messages or other meaningless information.
Joey and Chandler were robbed of all their belongings in The One With the Cat when Joey tried to sell his hand-built entertainment set. The burglars left a bold letter on the dry-erase board thanking the couple for everything.
The famous couch
Have you ever wondered why the group usually lounged on that sofa in Central Perk? Every day, many people come in, yet no matter how crowded the café gets, the couch is always available.
Looking closely, you’ll see a “Reserved” sign on the coffee table every time the pals gather there. They appear to have reserved the couch permanently! That’s why no one else has sat on it besides that one incident where the lads were bullied.
Ross’s natal day
As the program lasted ten seasons, we saw a lot of birthday parties for each of them. But how many people know when their birthdays are? While hundreds of episodes are written, continuity is sometimes vague.
For instance, when is Ross’s birthday? He informs Gunther in one episode that his birthday is in December. In another episode, though, he tells Joey that his birthday is October 18th. So, which is it? Was one of them improvised by David Schwimmer, who portrayed Ross?
Remember Phoebe’s horrifying artwork, which she affectionately dubbed Gladys? She debuted in Season 10, Episode 6, The One With Ross’s Grant. Monica and Rachel argue over who will get the frightening artwork in the show.
Gladys changed her clothes several times in the show, as you can see. She was wearing red in one photo and blue in another. Friends’ clothing designers appear to have had more than simply the cast to an outfit!
The innate comedy of the Friends group, combined with the humor in writing, makes for hilarious situations. While we, as viewers, can laugh freely, the cast can’t always disguise their laughter during filming. This is visible in this scene.
Jennifer Aniston tries to keep a straight face in the background while Phoebe obnoxiously “Eeee”s to Ross’s bagpipe playing. She blatantly breaks character by giggling in an attempt to hide her face. Matt LeBlanc recently stated that if Jen concealed her face, she was breaking the surface!
An extended pregnancy
Later seasons chronicle Rachel’s unexpected pregnancy, caused by a story about trekking on Mount Tibidabo. But did anybody notice Rachel’s abnormally extended pregnancy? If you still need clarification, take a look at the timeline below.
Rachel becomes pregnant during Chandler and Monica’s wedding in the summer. Her due date would have been around February. On the other hand, Rachel complains about the heat in episode 22 of that season. We can deduce that it’s now summer, yet she’s still pregnant!
We all know that Phoebe has a nasty twin named Ursula. She appears several times during the show, only to wreak trouble and anguish for Phoebe. Ursula is seen waitressing in a restaurant visited by Joey and Chandler in an earlier season episode.
Many people are unaware that Lisa Kudrow was also working on the program Mad About You at the time when she portrayed waitress Ursula Buffay. The authors added Phoebe’s twin sister to the program to construct a compelling history. It was almost like a crossover!
Which flat is this?
Those with a keen eye for detail would note that Monica’s apartment number was sometimes different. It altered somewhere between seasons. Earlier episodes, as seen above, had the apartment door showing Apartment 5. This was eventually modified to 20.
While we don’t know why this unique alteration occurred, it was required. The view from Monica’s balcony suggests a high-rise apartment, which would have been absent from apartment number 5. Apartment 20 appears to be more suited for that perspective.
The duckling and the chick
Joey and Chandler’s avian buddies often appear in the program. They not only keep the two gentlemen company, but they also amuse themselves. They’ve even managed to sabotage Rachel and Joshua’s date once!
Nevertheless, as the seasons passed, they vanished without a trace. There was never any hint of Joey or Chandler revealing their identities. The fact that the chick and duck were “on a farm” was merely mentioned in passing.
Today is Rachel’s birthday.
As with Ross’s birthday consistency, the authors similarly screwed up Rachel’s birthday. We’re confident this was an honest error, as it’s difficult to remember the specifics of each character after ten years!
Rachel informs Gunther in one episode that her birthday is on May 5th. Yet, later in Season 7, when a cop stops Rachel, he tells her she is an Aquarius. We’re not astrological gurus, but we’re confident that May birthdays are Taurus!
In Central Perk, the pals had had their fill of cakes, scones, muffins, and cookies. The baked items appear to be equally as excellent as the coffee! But did you notice when the cake display didn’t show any cake?
Joey and Gunther speak over the counter in one of the episodes, with a cake display in between them. Yet, instead of a cake, there is only a raw potato under the cover! This was most likely one of the covert pranks they pulled on set.
Estelle’s talents are manifold.
Joey’s adored agent, Estelle Leonard, captured all of our hearts. Indeed, she’s not the finest agent and didn’t always get Joey the best jobs, but her aggressive attitude makes us all adore her.
June Gable, who portrayed Estelle, was a multi-talented actor. She took over more than simply Estelle’s position. She was also the fiery nurse that assisted Carol in giving birth to her and Ross’s child! Did you happen to notice it was her? Nothing beats hair and makeup for entirely changing an actor’s appearance!
Susan Sarandon’s hit
Incredibly, Susan Sarandon appeared in the famous TV show Friends episode “The One With Joey’s New Brain.” Sarandon played the role of Jessica Lockhart, whereas Joey also had a role. Jessica Lockhart was known for her aggressive personality, often slapping other characters on the show, making her quite an iconic figure among viewers.
What’s truly fascinating is that the person she pounded on the series was none other than her daughter, Eva Amurri, who coincidentally played the role of Sarandon’s character’s daughter as well. This incredible coincidence is sure to leave anyone’s mind spinning with amazement!
Many flashback episodes have occurred over the seasons, allowing us to learn about the companions’ pasts. This includes Monica before her weight reduction and Rachel before her nose operation. But, there appears to be a chronological error, as we see Rachel meeting Chandler for the first time and many times.
Unless there’s a Friends universe we’re unaware of, the authors may forget what they’ve written. We can grasp this error after hundreds of experiences. Rachel initially met Chandler during Thanksgiving while they were all in college, and it appears to happen again in a later flashback episode.
Joey’s cash code
Although Joey has always been depicted as the less bright of the two friends, we believe he has more extraordinary street smarts. Joey has demonstrated this about himself on countless occasions. He dials Phoebe from here since he needs to remember his ATM PIN. As it turns out, 5639 is not a random sequence of integers.
When you look at a phone’s keypad from the 1990s, before the QWERTY keyboard, the letters 5639 spell out JOEY! It would have been a disaster if he had utilized this to help him remember his PIN.
Breaking Character: Part 2
It’s a well-known fact that the cast of Friends had terrific on-screen chemistry that made the show so special. Jennifer Aniston may have been known for breaking character and laughing during filming, but she wasn’t the only one. Matt LeBlanc, who played Joey, was also caught on camera struggling to maintain a straight face. One particular instance that comes to mind is in the episode “The One With the Worst Best Man Ever.” In this episode, Joey hides behind Ross, played by David Schwimmer, while trying to avoid someone.
Although Matt LeBlanc is almost out of frame in this scene, it’s impossible to ignore his struggle to stop laughing. And who can blame him? David Schwimmer’s impeccable comedic timing was genuinely hilarious in that scenario! Despite Matt’s visible struggle to contain his laughter, it’s surprising that Matthew Perry, who played Chandler, managed to keep a straight face throughout the scene. It’s a testament to his acting skills and how funny David Schwimmer can be! This is just one of the many instances that showcase the cast’s great dynamic and how they made Friends such an iconic show.
Ross’s ice cream musings
We can all agree that Ross is a lovely person with solid ideas. After all, he is a paleontologist and must be steadfast in his beliefs. Yet when it comes to ice cream, his opinions appear to be unstable.
Ross claims in Season 7 that he doesn’t like ice cream because “it’s too chilly.” Nonetheless, he is seen eating ice cream in several episodes before and after that. Character preferences like this are difficult to track, and if you’re not a detail person, you could overlook this contradiction.
How did they fund it?
Several people have criticized and questioned how the characters in Friends could afford to live in such luxury, given their professions. From the grandeur of their residences, you’d assume they’re all filthy prosperous 20-somethings in New York.
Monica rented her flat from her grandparents. People are curious about Phoebe’s living status. She can afford a luxurious massage parlor and an underpaid coffee shop singer! And it’s right in the heart of Greenwich Village.
Friends’ production staff would collaborate to put easter eggs in the sequences. This one is a little more precise, and if you’re unfamiliar with American Sign Language, you could have missed it. Take note of Ross’s clothing here.
It has an ASL design that says “friends.” When you think about it, it’s meta, but it’s so specific that nobody will comprehend it unless they know ASL. Even then, they’d miss it if they weren’t paying attention!
Rachel’s full name is Rachel Karen Greene, as True Friends lovers would know. So how do you spell her surname? Audiences were made to believe it was spelled “Green” after the color. But an episode in a later season proved everyone incorrect!
As Ross and Emily argued over whether to invite Rachel to their wedding, we noticed Ross prepared to mail an invitation to Rachel. Rachel’s surname is spelled “Greene” with an “e” on the envelope. Was this an honest error, or have we been misled for decades?
Ross’s initial sighting?
Ross and Chandler have been closest friends since college, and they’ve shared and safeguarded each other’s secrets throughout the years. One of these mysteries concerns Ross’s first encounter. Carol was assumed to be Ross’s, first love. However, it was proven wrong in a later episode.
In Season 7, as the gang revealed one other’s secrets, Chandler revealed that Ross slept with the cleaning lady at their hostel. This would have happened in college before Carol and Ross began dating. After all, that wasn’t Carol!
A big family
Courteney Cox, who plays Monica, married actor David Arquette in June 1999. She adopted his surname, meaning her name on Friends’ credits also altered. The performance paid a touching homage to the couple’s marriage.
Instead of only adding “Arquette” to Courteney’s name, they also included it in the credits of all the other cast members! Many viewers may have been perplexed by this change. When we initially saw it, we believed it was a fault in our television!
It’s a kin matter
Remember when Rachel and Joshua visited Joshua’s parents’ house because they assumed his parents were in Europe? Rachel had an embarrassing situation since she wore lingerie to dinner. Yet it wasn’t what made the show so memorable.
Joshua’s parents arrived midway through their date and couldn’t have been nicer. But did you notice anything unusual about Joshua’s father? That is, in fact, Matthew Perry’s father, John Bennett Perry! Both father and son are lovely and gorgeous, much like their father.
Who is the person on Rachel’s passport?
While props are necessary for a show’s credibility, they must also be correct. Otherwise, people may have difficulty believing the account. This was, unfortunately, the situation in the episode where Rachel was preparing to go to France.
She delivers her passport to the airport employee at the counter. But have you noticed anything? It’s one of those “blinks, and you’ll miss it” moments, but the woman on her passport is not her! Whose passport did she even give up?
Joey’s long-running commercial
Joey appears on a VD poster in episode 9 of season 1 and endures the consequences of being rejected by his family around Thanksgiving. He couldn’t even pick up a female at the station since the signs were everywhere.
Unfortunately, this was not the only episode in which Joey’s VD posters appeared. The posters may be seen outside on the streets in the subsequent episodes. That wouldn’t make sense if the indications appeared for a day and vanished.
Friends aired for ten seasons, during which various tragic world events occurred, the most devastating of which was the 9/11 attacks. The show couldn’t stay silent any longer, so they paid tribute in the only way they knew how: with Easter eggs.
The show’s creators would place easter eggs of the FDNY insignia in the scenes as a tribute to the New York City Fire Department, which sacrificed their lives to save victims in the towers that day. This is seen on Joey’s shirt and the dry-erase board at Chandler and Joey’s.
Twice the trouble
Even though Friends is not an action show, the cast members have body doubles on set. This is generally used for post-production, and it’s a frequent technique. But, even with editing, they occasionally fail to entirely create the illusion.
You can see Courteney Cox over Lisa Kudrow’s shoulder in this sequence of images. Yet as the vision shifts to Monica’s perspective, you know it’s not Courteney Cox! Were you aware of this or too engrossed in action to notice?
Huggsys from all across the world
Huggsy, Joey’s beloved penguin doll, first appeared in season 9 after Rachel’s daughter Emma formed an unhealthy attachment to it. Huggsy, on the other hand, isn’t a newcomer to that season. He’s been around for a long if you’ve noticed.
Huggsy may be seen in the background of numerous shots at Joey’s apartment in past seasons. Check him out here, relaxing on the couch behind Monica. Joey has always had a thing for that penguin.
Another family affair
Matthew Perry’s father was not the only one that appeared on the show. They also incorporated Jennifer Aniston’s personal life data as an Easter egg in the show. Did you know that Jennifer Aniston’s surname isn’t “Aniston”?
This is Anastassakis! If it sounds familiar, it’s because Monica and Chandler’s wedding coincided. The actress’s father had a Greek surname that was eventually anglicized as “Aniston.” That’s how the show hinted at it.
Courteney Cox wasn’t the only cast member who had a body duplicate. Jennifer Aniston has one as well. Unfortunately, like with Courteney’s copy, they neglected to correctly remove the double from the photo! Did you get this one?
In season 9, we swap shots and find that someone else has replaced Jen Aniston! Did you notice this? In this photo, they didn’t even bother to get the double to wear the same attire. Perhaps this is the woman seen in Rachel’s passport!
The crack in the wall
Friends was a comedy that aired in the 1990s. Hence it was shown in the 4:3 aspect ratio that was common on most TV screens at the time. But, when televisions grew in size and display quality, viewers began to discover set secrets that they had previously missed because of the outdated aspect ratio.
We have a whole perspective of what was on set in today’s period when televisions have an aspect ratio of 16:9. As we can see here, there is a previously unseen hole in Joey and Chandler’s apartment wall!
In the episode where Joey gets cast as Al Pacino’s body duplicate, the following information is only visible to those with keen eyes. A mound of boxes can be seen behind the director on the set while Joey films his part. “Monica’s” is written on one of them.
We have no idea how this box got here. This appears to be the box wrecked by the water when Ross and Monica returned home to collect their belongings from their parent’s house. What exactly was this box doing here?
The image of the laundry
Who can forget Joey’s frantic attempt to get his image on the wall of his neighborhood laundry? He disagreed with the dry cleaner for his spot on the border of fame, even bringing up the film Air Force One.
The dry cleaner confessed he’d never watched the movie. What’s ironic about this is that the actor who portrayed the dry cleaner also worked on Air Force One! Ilia Volok is a Ukrainian actor who has acted in several films.
Friends have had their fair share of cameo appearances. The star-studded cast has collaborated with Hollywood A-listers from the period. From Julia Roberts to Reese Witherspoon to Bruce Willis, everyone has been on Friends at some point. (Bruce, we adore you!)
Occasionally the cameos may be relevant to the characters yet go entirely unnoticed. We know, for example, that Ross and Joey were huge Die Hard fans. Nobody noticed when Bruce Willis played Elizabeth’s father in the episode.
What happened to Phoebe’s mother?
Phoebe’s original mother is revealed to be Lily Buffay’s Best Friend, Phoebe Abbott, in Season 3. This threw a kink in Phoebe’s history, and she was so distraught that she refused to visit her “mother,” Phoebe Abbott, again.
Nevertheless, she is never mentioned again until one of the episodes, when Phoebe states her mother gave her a family relic. It appears that the two reconciled, although what happened to Phoebe Abbott was never revealed.
Ross, how old are you?
In addition to the uncertainty regarding Ross’s birthdate, there is also uncertainty concerning his age. We all know our Friends are in their twenties, and we even follow a handful of them as they approach their thirties. So what is Ross’s age?
Ross declines Chandler’s excellent milkshake offer in Season 3 with the excuse, “No thanks, I’m 29.” Yet, Ross protests two seasons later that he does not want to get divorced twice before 30. Was he 29 for three years?
Chandler may very well cry in this one.
Chandler is the snarky one among the six pals. He utilizes comedy as a defensive technique, and his terrible history prevents him from displaying vulnerable feelings. Even an episode named The One When Chandler Can’t Cry exists.
Nonetheless, as seen by these few screenshots, Chandler is emotionally aware. He’s been observed weeping and not trying to disguise it on multiple occasions. Despite declaring that he is “not a sobbing sort of person.” We’re calling your bluff, Chandler!
The capuchin monkey
Friends aren’t complete without mentioning Ross’s pet capuchin, Marcel. Much like Marcel caused problems for the people on the program, the actual capuchin that played Marcel caused problems for David Schwimmer while shooting. The monkey would cause havoc and throw off the funny timing.
Despite everything, you can’t deny that you sensed Ross’s concern for Marcel throughout the series. Did you notice that Ross was sporting a banana-shaped lapel pin when the cast sent Marcel off to the zoo?
Chandler and the toilet door
One of the most memorable Friends episodes has Julia Roberts as Susie, Chandler’s former classmate whom she formerly harassed. A bathroom tryst goes bad when Chandler is played, leaving him nude in the men’s restroom.
Or, allegedly, completely nude. Chandler was supposed to be wearing Susie’s underpants, but it doesn’t explain how he could leave the restaurant unscathed. Even the bathroom door, underwear or not, would not have concealed him entirely!
As we all know, Monica has a closet down the hall from the restroom. It’s permanently closed and never really had a function, except in one episode when the pals are curious about what’s behind that door. But have you noticed the shadow?
The door constantly casts an odd shadow on the floor. Because this was set in a studio, we assume the shadow was created by lighting equipment just behind that door. But who can say? Perhaps Monica had been concealing Richard there all along.